days filled to the bursting point. Or, as someone said last night: where there’s too much to assimilate all at once.
For a musical work in progress, a friend asks me to record some words – texts, poems, in whatever language I choose. I often read my own writing out loud, but I had never heard my spoken voice as someone else does. Several surprises: at its wavering quality when I speak slowly, for one. Aging does that. At the surprise in hearing words I wrote a while ago, spoken in a different context – and commented upon by someone with no knowledge of the longer work from which I lifted them. We’ll redo the exercise over the coming months while he shapes and shifts the musical score and the structure of the final piece.
Surprise at seeing my face as photographed for a passport-type application. I laughed out loud at the sight of me. Why? Because catching my reflection in a public place, I’d be sure to say: “I know that woman from somewhere. She’s a relative of mine – but which one?” Hello there, me at a few days short of my sixty-ninth birthday. “Such an erotic year,” someone commented yesterday, of course. Define the word erotic, please. At which stage in life? In what circumstances?
Appointments piling up. Expectations, agenda items. Teaching sessions to prepare. Characters, caught in a snapshot when they didn’t expect the candid camera moment.
Surprising yourself with your own writing. Stepping out for a different look at the places you call you. What to emphasize, what to let go.